Police left flummoxed over vehicle plate thefts

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POLICE are scratching their heads over thefts of numberplates in Dacorum.

Out of 50 plates stolen recently 30 have been linked to theft of petrol – where cars carrying the plates drive off without paying – but the remaining 20 have disappeared.

Chief Insp Mike Pryce told a meeting of the Dacorum Community Safety Partnership: “Out of 50 numberplates stolen recently in Dacorum only 30 have been used for theft of fuel whereas the others, we have no knowledge what happened to them. It’s difficult to understand that as a crime.

“They put them on cars, then they fill up with petrol and don’t pay.”

He also said officers were targeting second hand dealers over the rise in thefts of catalytic converters from vehicles, where criminals unbolt or cut the valuable component from the exhaust system.

“It’s far more organised than people realise,” he said. “It’s a real threat.

“If you see someone under a car, that’s the sort of thing we need to know about.”